President Obama’s ’change’ in kids and culture

On Tuesday, Sept. 8, President Barack Obama will address children in schools across the country and “encourage them to stay in school and succeed,” according to the Department of Education.

It sounds harmless, even healthy, for our kids to hear from the president in school, and of course we want our kids to be successful students and patriots, so why are some parents so upset about this seemingly innocuous address?

One reason is the lack of “country” in the proposed subject material and provided discussion questions. The resources coming from the Department of Education are much more focused on “helping the president” than serving the country. For instance, on the 7-12th grade pre-speech worksheet, it suggests that “Teachers may post in large print around the classroom notable quotes excerpted from President Obama’s speeches on education.” It seems glaring and egotistical that this administration only highlights President Obama’s speeches. Has no other president said anything worth repeating? (As a side note, originally the idea was for students to write themselves letters on “how they can help the president” but after it came under fire from conservatives, that assignment was removed.)

The worksheet for younger children, grades K-6, is even more Obama-centric. A few of the questions read: “What is the president trying to tell me? What is the president asking me to do? What new ideas and actions is the president challenging me to think about?”

During a time when many Americans are unhappy with the president’s values and policies, this seems like an attempt to indoctrinate children into a different America than their parents are comfortable with.

Florida’s Republican Party Chairman Jim Greer said in a press release: “While I support educating our children to respect both the office of the American President and the value of community service, I do not support using our children as tools to spread liberal propaganda. The address scheduled for September 8, 2009, does not allow for healthy debate on the President’s agenda, but rather obligates the youngest children in our public school system to agree with our President’s initiatives or be ostracized by their teachers and classmates.”

Michelle Malkin posted a special Hall Pass on her Web site for parents who may be uncomfortable with the president’s speech. Some citizens, and quite a few Christians, are going even further, spurred by groups such as the Exodus Mandate, a Christian organization that offers help to parents who want to put their kids in Christian schools or home school.

John Stuart Mill wrote “On Liberty” in 1869, in which he famously said: “A general State education is a mere contrivance for moulding people to be exactly like one another: and as the mould in which it casts them is that which pleases the predominant power in the government . . . in proportion as it is efficient and successful, it establishes a despotism over the mind, leading by natural tendency to one over the body.” Strong words. Anybody else feeling a little weird about our president’s speech?

Unfortunately, in public schools, God is already absent, and a pledge of service to Barack Obama has already been broadcast once. G.K. Chesterson wrote: “Once abolish the God, and the government becomes the God.” Is this what we’re seeing here?

 

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  1. mcintyre865 said:

    Dani, I must respectfully disagree. There is absolutely nothing unbiblical or a liberal agenda with encouraging our children to be good citizens. you have fallen into the political trap of secularism by demanding that we isolate our children and not expose them to other’s opinions, even if we disagree. God’s truth will always triumph. “what is popular isn’t always right and what is right isn’t always popular. We listened to Pres Bush, who never to my knowledge addressed our nation’s children – why didn’t we complain about that? Mark 7:6-8 (New International Version) 6He replied, “Isaiah was right when he prophesied about you hypocrites; as it is written: ” ‘These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me. 7They worship me in vain; their teachings are but rules taught by men.'[a] 8You have let go of the commands of God and are holding on to the traditions of men.” Remember this also applies to Christ followers as well as the unsaved…. Respectfully – McIntyre865

    September 7, 2009
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  2. This is a manufactured controversy by extremists just like the whole birther debate. That anyone would take these objections seriously flies in the face of common sense.

    September 8, 2009
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  3. DeltaFour said:

    I’d like to thank EverydayChristian for allowing this pot of soup to get stirred.. (and salted…) I happen to think that BloggerDani wasn’t strong enough in her criticism. It isn’t because what Obama did is wrong,. but because it is exploitive. Look, the reason Tom Cruise’s opinions get aired on TV and News is because he is a celebrity. You and I may smarter, wiser, have better understanding and communicate with more clarity, but our opinions don’t add up compared with the swaying power of celebrity. This is the reason for the speech. Obama wants to gain acceptance from soft hearts, through his celebrity, yet our schools ought to be encouraging strong minds. Remember, as members of the church, we are to be ‘transformed by the renewing of our minds’ (Rom 12:1-2), and we are to ‘get our minds ready for action’ (I Pet 1:13). Every parent knows that loving a child requires much more discipline for the mind than it requires in the exercise of heartfelt emotions. Again, I think this is a ‘warm-hearted’ stunt to boost ratings through mindless celebrity. Lastly, if pushed to the extreme could this be called idolatry — the worship of idols?

    September 9, 2009
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